Zodiac animal-shaped trees, especially the horse, for 2014, have been selling very well in the markets despite expensive prices.
Horse-shaped trees for 2014
In preparation for the Year of the Horse, growers in Cho Lach District, Ben Tre Province have been producing various kinds of tree in horse shapes. A facility called Nam Cong produced 40 pairs of horse from Chinese Banyan trees. Each pair costs around VND3 million (USD143) to 5 million and has been custom made on orders from HCM City and neighbouring provinces.
Nguyen Van Cong, from the facility, said it took 50 to 70 tree branches to create a two-metre high horse. He went on to say that many people bought this product with the hope that it will bring them a successful year. Cong also said the price for a set of 12 zodiac animals would range from VND15 million to 25 million.
Tran Van Duoc, a grower in Cho Lach, used kumquat trees to make horse-shaped and dragon-shaped trees. "We have to make plans from one year ago so that the trees produce plenty of fruit. A grower needs 3.5 days to make a horse. About two-thirds of our products were already booked so we'll bring the rest to the market." Duoc said.
According to the growers, traders came and ordered trees sooner than previous years so prices increased by 20% to 30%, especially those of yellow apricot flowers and horse-shaped trees. The growers designed trees in other shapes, such as vase, tower or musical instrument.
VND7 million for a tower-shaped tree
"Traders arrived sooner because they want the best trees at cheaper prices. I have already sold 700 apricot trees," a grower said.
Tran Van Du, head of the Vinh Thanh Commune's Farmer Union, said 60% of the households are in gardening business and they have provided over 2 million products to the market.